Sunday, February 24, 2008

Back From CAA

I have returned safely from CAA, and can state that my panel went pretty well despite technical difficulties (not directly related to my own). We had a gratifyingly decent-sized audience for the last panel of the last day, and all of the talks were (I thought) interesting.
My laptop, however, is not in a good mood, and this rather takes my mind off all the positive aspects of the conference and even away from the pleasure of having lunch with my friend Deanna (who was in Pittsburgh for a conference simultaneously with my being in Dallas for CAA; I did get to take her to a few of our Nationality Rooms and she got very excited about all the Masaryk memorabilia in the Czechoslovak Room).
But, as noted before, my laptop screen began acting peculiar Wednesday morning, and intermittently showed a sort of pinstriping that made things a bit blurry and hard to read. This evening I was all settled down on the couch working on the illustrations for my dissertation, as after getting up at 4 am I was hardly in a state to work on the text. Things were just getting nicely underway when the screen dimmed and the pinstriping went to a faded yellowish hue. This has happened a few times before and seems to go away upon rebooting, so I rebooted. My Sibling had reminded me that there are various diagnostics one can run, and so I began to search for where those might be, when the screen took on the interesting appearance of an oil slick.
I decided to shut down the laptop entirely, let it cool off, and see if I could find out anything online using the other computer.
After roaming the internet, I'm really not sure what exactly is wrong. Could it be the video card? Could the inverter be on its last legs? Could it be some entirely other problem? Inquiring minds want to know. My dissertation is due Friday, I have many hours of work ahead of me to make this deadline, and for various reasons it would be a real problem to try to do this without the laptop. Not impossible, but very troublesome.
I am not at all happy.
I will say, however, that when I came home Orion was very happy to be petted and Calypso Spots licked my hand. It is nice to be appreciated by the lapine population as well as by the conference-going crowd.

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Blogger Julia said...

The laptop display sounds like it is in a dangerous state. Backup everything you need to finish your dissertation. (Worst comes to worst, with your backups, you can rent a laptop to finish it up while yours is in the shop.)

Okay, got the backup? Now let's check your video driver. Restart your computer in safe mode (press F8 rebooting) and you can see if there is an issue with the driver. If there is you can either update it or get someone else to do so. Doesn't the Uni have computer support? These guys love this type of work!

February 25, 2008 9:09 AM  
Blogger Karla said...

I made an appointment to take it in at 11:30. The most vital stuff is all backed up (the hard drives are fine anyway, I am sure).

Since updating the driver on Wednesday did no good, the technician on the phone thinks it's a hardware problem, and I agree. Unfortunately they don't work on hardware problems, but he said that they would at least give me a diagnosis and let me know whether to junk it or repair it, or something like that.

February 25, 2008 3:46 PM  
Blogger Julia said...

Good luck with it. I do dislike this aspect of laptops - their fragility drives me nuts!

February 25, 2008 10:53 PM  

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